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steamnsteel 09-22-2010 11:08 AM

Bait Fisherman In The Park
My brother and I last weekend saw someone carrying a small container of corn up the creek heading for cover:confused: rods and bags in hand preparing for a slaying. Would you make the call and turn them in?

I/we spend time and money to be able to fish the park in the right way and release more than what we keep, but this really hit a sore spot with me and I just thought I would see how some of you felt.

I did do a search but didn't find the relevant thread for this subject.

mattblick 09-22-2010 11:14 AM

I would call on the spot..

Who has the phone number of appropriate authority to notify?

Trip 09-22-2010 11:15 AM

I saw a post about this once and someone said the rangers almost don't care because they are usually too busy with traffic and such due to low funding and lack of manpower. It's a shame people can't seem to follow the rules.

NDuncan 09-22-2010 11:15 AM

Where in the park were you? I have heard (mainly on this site) that calling the parks phone line for this does little or nothing. If I knew where the people were, I would seek out and find the closest ranger.

And if that fails, you could always follow them and then keep throwing rocks into the pools where they are poaching. (probably not a good idea)

from the park website:

Lures, Bait, and Equipment
Fishing is permitted only by the use of one hand-held rod.

Only artificial flies or lures with a single hook may be used. Dropper flies may be used. Up to two flies on a leader.

Use or possession of any form of fish bait or liquid scent other than artificial flies or lures on or along any park stream while in possession of fishing tackle is prohibited. Prohibited baits include, but are not limited to, minnows (live or preserved), worms, corn, cheese, bread, salmon eggs, pork rinds, liquid scents and natural baits found along streams.

Use or possession of double, treble, or gang hooks is prohibited.

Fishing tackle and equipment, including creels and fish in possession, are subject to inspection by authorized personnel.

Please report violators to nearest ranger or to (865) 436-1294.

Jim Casada 09-22-2010 11:27 AM

steamnsteel--Sadly, the issue of bait fishing, not to mention poaching, use of ilegal lures (treble hooks), and other violations of the fishing regs seems to be of almost no interest whatsoever to Park officials. Most of this was discussed on this forum, in considerable detail, a month or two back. Virtually every post had a tale of woe about poachers, lack of official presence in the backcountry, etc.

I noted that I have been checked only a handful of times in the last three decades, and one of those was by a NCWRC officer, not a Park ranger. Turns out they have jurisdiction in the Park.

Still, I would call, and more to the point, I would try to get a license plate number.
If you got a brush-off from the person who answered the call, I would do the following:
(1) Ask for the name of the person with whom you are talking
(2) Write a letter to the Park superintendent indicating your dismay with the response you got.
If nothing else that would force Ditmansen to address the issue in some fashion.

I realize the Park has plenty of front country issues, but flat-out ignoring lawbreaking is just wrong. It also is an exercise in contradiction--why spend hundreds of thousands on speck restoration and then ignore activities counteracting that effort?

Jim Casada

mattblick 09-22-2010 11:27 AM

Can TWRA /NCWRC not issue citations because it is a National park?

The rangers are spread thin in the park, if these are the only people able to ticket I am surprised more poachers aren't out there.

I found these number for TN, but can't locate a poacher hotline on

Individuals with information about poachers or poaching activities can contact the TWRA by calling one of the regional offices from 7:00 a.m. until 12:00 midnight, seven days a week.
Telephone numbers for reporting poachers are as follows:
West Tennessee (Region 1) - 1-800-831-1173
Middle Tennessee (Region 2) - 1-800-255-8972
Cumberland Plateau (Region 3) - 1-800-241-0767
East Tennessee (Region 4) - 1-800-831-1174

Edit: I did find NC listed on
North Carolina

Carlito 09-22-2010 12:39 PM

OR you could use your ninja fly fishing skills to sneak up and steal their corn while they're watching their bobber in the honey hole...

steamnsteel 09-22-2010 01:13 PM

Cataloochee Valley right in front of one of the park regulation signs they went into the brush, I was making my way back to camp to indulge in gourmet meal.

I had one of the elk volunteers radio for Mark and they told me he was coming fom the Big Creek area. A big tip of the hat for getting the job done with a ticket and a little butt chewing for them also.

I stopped him later when he was making his rounds to ask how things went and he told me the story, I gave him the thumbs up and big yeeehawww!:biggrin:.

Jim Casada 09-22-2010 02:08 PM

steamnsteel--Now that's good news, and good for you for the action you took. It doesn't have to happen too many times for word to get around.
Jim Casada

psnapp 09-22-2010 03:14 PM

I just happened to be dressed in ranger-like colors one day while fishing the North River --- dark olive shorts, khaki shirt and a dark olive cap that had a light brown arrowhead patch in front. Happened on a couple of fellows fishing bait back in the heather, and when they saw me, they did some high-steppin' outta there!

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